UMCOR U.S. Latest Responses
UMCOR and its partners are responding to disasters across the globe every day. Please join us in prayer for the affected areas and consider giving to UMCOR U.S. Disaster Response to support these efforts.
UMCOR will provide further updates as they become available. For the most up to date information, follow the UMCOR Facebook page.
2023 DISASTER RESPONSE
On Aug. 30, Hurricane Idalia made landfall in Florida, bringing flooding and damage. In anticipation of the hurricane, UMCOR staff conducted a 2-hour workshop for cabinet members and conference leadership to review the conference disaster response plan. UMCOR awarded a grant to the Florida Conference for emergency supplies.
Wildfires in Hawaii
(Updated as of Aug. 14, 2023) Wind-driven wildfires on Maui have prompted evacuations and caused significant loss of life and widespread damage. UMCOR is coordinating with the California-Pacific Annual Conference to process an initial grant for emergency supplies such as shelf-stable food, water, hygiene items and tools to help survivors recover belongings. As first responders continue to provide initial aid in the area, please join UMCOR in prayer for those affected. Gifts can be made in the following ways:
- Online at https://umcmission.org/advance-project/901670
- By toll-free telephone call: 1-888-252-6174
- By check made out to Global Ministries/UMCOR with “Advance #901670-Hawaii” written on the memo line and mailed to Global Ministries/UMCOR, GPO, P.O. Box 9068, New York, NY, 10087-9068
- By check made out to Global Ministries/UMCOR with “Advance #901670-Hawaii” written on the memo line and given to any United Methodist church.
- View and download resources for giving here.
Tornadoes in Oklahoma
The April 19 outbreak of tornadoes destroyed many homes and left families without power in McClain and Pottawatomie counties. It also caused significant damage to the high school in Shawnee. An UMCOR solidarity grant supported Shawnee High School students in completing the school year in the face of tornado damage.
Tornado in Mississippi and other parts of the southeast
On March 24, a powerful tornado traveled at least 170 miles, killing more than 25 people, injuring hundreds and causing damage primarily in Mississippi. The supercell that produced this deadly twister also appeared to produce tornadoes causing damage in northwest and north-central Alabama and then Georgia.
UMCOR awarded grants to the Mississippi and Arkansas conferences as well as to the United Methodist Churches of Indiana. It also allowed the North Alabama Conference to use unused funds previously awarded to address the current disaster.
Severe weather and tornadoes in Alabama and Georgia
In mid-January, a powerful storm front produced a number of tornadoes that caused damage in both the Alabama-West Florida and North Georgia conferences. Hundreds of homes were destroyed and at least 9 people were killed.UMCOR awarded solidarity grants to both conferences to support a coordinated response for survivors, including relief supplies, debris removal and clean-up efforts. ERTs were deployed in both conferences. The South Georgia Conference also deployed to assist with the relief efforts.
In late January, several tornadoes moved across the state of Texas within 12 hours. Conference Early Response Teams deployed to assist with immediate relief and clean-up efforts. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the Texas Conference to support their initial relief efforts.
Flooding and landslides in California
Beginning in mid-December 2022 and continuing into mid-January 2023, California experienced a continuous series of rainstorms (frequently referred to as “atmospheric rivers”). This comes on top of wildfire damage from the last few years for many areas. As a result, California has had an extensive number of floods, mudslides, landslides and other related damage.
UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the California-Nevada Conference to support a coordinated response for survivors, including relief supplies, debris removal and clean-up efforts. The conference aided several communities, including those in the Sacramento area, focusing on flooded agricultural workers and senior and low-income households.
2021-22 DISASTER RESPONSE
Blizzard in Buffalo and Western New York (2022)
Over the Christmas weekend, Western New York experienced a devastating blizzard. This tragic storm buried the city of Buffalo in over 50 inches of snow and was accompanied by a –30-degree wind chill and 80 mph winds. The disaster took at least 39 lives.
UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the Upper New York Conference to support a coordinated response for survivors, including relief supplies. Funds were used to replenish food pantries and support other emergency services.
Severe weather and tornadoes in Alabama (2022)
In late November, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama experienced severe weather and dangerous tornado activity. In Eutaw and Montgomery, Alabama, homes and businesses saw structural damage. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the Alabama-West Florida Conference to support families and communities in need of immediate assistance.
Hurricane Nicole (2022)
Hurricane Nicole made landfall in Florida on November 10 with sustained winds of 75 mph, giving the state two landfalling hurricanes (along with Ian) in one year for the first time since 2005.
In response to the needs of survivors in multiple coastal communities, UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the Florida Conference to support their local relief efforts.
Hurricane Ian (2022)
Hurricane Ian came through western Cuba to make landfall in Florida as a catastrophic category 4 storm on September 28. Whole cities and communities were devastated in Florida and the storm continued to bring heavy rain, wind and flooding up the east coast of the U.S., affecting numerous states.
The Florida Annual Conference received a solidarity grant from UMCOR to address the immediate needs of survivors and deploy supplies. In South Carolina, Ian was the first hurricane to make landfall in nearly six years and UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the conference to help address immediate needs.
In Florida, an UMCOR consultant will provide assistance with planning and logistics and a program manager is working on the development of a short-term relief grant while a long-term recovery program is developed. In South Carolina, UMCOR will assist with the development of long-term recovery grants.
Hurricane Fiona in Puerto Rico (2022)
Hurricane Fiona, the first major hurricane of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season, caused catastrophic damage in Puerto Rico and brought torrential rains to the Dominican Republic in mid-September. It left millions without power and running water for weeks. It left millions without power and running water. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to help address immediate needs.
Flooding in Georgia (2022)
Flash flooding brought severe damage to Chattooga and Floyd Counties in Georgia in early September. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the North Georgia Conference to assist in local relief efforts.
Flooding in Mississippi (2022)
In late August, the people of Jackson, Mississippi experienced flooding and a water system emergency. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the Mississippi Conference to provide access to safe drinking water for those affected.
Flooding in Kentucky (2022)
In late July, Kentucky and other parts of Appalachia experienced devastating flooding resulting in the loss of life and property. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the Kentucky Annual Conference and delivered nearly 3,000 kits during the first week of the disaster. In coordination with the conference disaster response coordinator, UMCOR-trained Early Response Teams (ERT) deployed to the affected areas.
Severe weather and tornadoes in Wisconsin, Michigan, Oklahoma and South Carolina (2022)
Severe weather and tornadoes touched down in many regions of the U.S. during the spring and summer months. UMCOR awarded solidarity grants to the above conferences in support of immediate response to the damage and to meet the needs of survivors.
Wildfires in New Mexico (2022)
Beginning April 5 and continuing into May, multiple fires burned hundreds of thousands of acres in New Mexico. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the New Mexico Annual Conference to support the needs of evacuees and coordinate debris removal and cleanup efforts. It has also awarded over 2 million dollars in 2023 to provide infrastructure, hire key personnel, offer Disaster Case Management, and provide funding for unmet needs.
Tornadoes in Florida (2022)
On January 16, several rotations touched down and caused significant damage to residential and commercial properties, displacing roughly 300 people. UMCOR awarded an initial solidarity grant and is financially supporting the Florida Conference in a 2-year recovery project that will focus on home repair and case management.
Wildfire in Colorado (2021)
On December 30 2021, a fire rapidly spread through Boulder County, Colorado, that consumed over 6,000 acres and close to 1,000 homes. UMCOR awarded an emergency grant to the Mountain Sky Conference to assist with immediate needs of evacuees and other survivors of the Marshall Fire. UMCOR followed with a recovery grant in 2022 to provide direct assistance and case management services to households affected by the fire.
Tornadoes across the United States (2021)
Following a deadly string of December 2021 storms and tornadoes, UMCOR supported conference disaster response coordinators in damage assessment and immediate relief efforts. Initial emergency grants were awarded in Kentucky, Arkansas and Western Tennessee to support local response efforts. UMCOR awarded a substantial recovery grant to the Tennessee-Western Kentucky Annual Conference in 2022 for volunteer engagement and case management.
In October, multiple tornados and high winds hit the already ravaged areas of Lake Charles and southern Louisiana. UMCOR awarded a solidarity grant to the Louisiana Conference to support their meeting of urgent needs such as food and shelter and to support volunteer efforts, initial case work and other relief activities.
A group of 11 tornadoes moved across Alabama in March, causing death and destruction in four counties. An UMCOR recovery grant is providing case management and construction services in the Alabama West Florida Conference.
Hurricane Ida (2021)
Category 4 Hurricane Ida made landfall in Louisiana on August 29 2021, the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, and continued to bring destruction along the east coast. UMCOR awarded initial solidarity grants to the Louisiana, Mississippi, Greater New Jersey, Eastern Pennsylvania, New York and Susquehanna conferences. It awarded a recovery grant to the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference for case management and construction management.
Flash Flooding in Tennessee (2021)
UMCOR awarded a grant to the Tennessee Conference in support of immediate relief efforts following torrential rain and flooding in August. The region of middle Tennessee continues to recover from major flooding in March, for which UMCOR also awarded a grant.
Tropical Storm/Hurricane Henri (2021)
UMCOR awarded a grant to the New England Conference to support relief efforts following the heavy rain and flooding produced by the August storm.
Tropical Storm Fred (2021)
UMCOR awarded a grant to the Western North Carolina Conference to support initial relief efforts for flooding caused by the August storm and awarded a recovery grant to assist households in recovery from the heavy rain, river surges and floods.
Wildfires in the West (2021)
The California-Nevada and Oregon-Idaho Conferences received grants to aid in the response to the 2021 Dixie and Bootleg Fires. Technical assistance and training was provided to the conferences. UMCOR continues to provide assistance for recovery from previous wildfires. The Pacific-Northwest Conference was awarded a recovery grant for rapidly spreading wildfire in Washington State in summer of 2020.
Flooding in Michigan (2021)
On June 25 – 26, widespread rain fell in Metro Detroit. Some areas experienced 6-8 inches of rain resulting in major flooding. UMCOR awarded a grant to support disaster case managers in their work of help meet unmet needs of survivors and continued its support in 2022 with a large recovery grant.
Surfside condo collapse in Florida (2021)
UMCOR awarded a grant to bolster the conference’s disaster relief efforts in support of survivors and families of the tragic building collapse on June 24 2021.
Hailstorm in Texas (2021)
In late April, a hail and wind storm brought widespread damage to the small unincorporated town of D’Hanis. UMCOR awarded a grant to support the Rio Texas Conference in long term recovery, with funds used to purchase material and, where necessary, contract labor, to make repairs to damaged homes.
Winter storms in Texas (2021)
Emergency funding supported relief efforts in the Texas, Central Texas and North Texas Conferences. Cleaning kits were delivered to communities where burst pipes caused damage to homes, buildings and churches. UMCOR-trained local early response teams deployed. A recovery grant was awarded to the Texas Conference to support the repair of homes.
Hurrican Sally and Zeta (2020)
In response to the storms that hit the U.S. Gulf Coast in September, UMCOR awarded a grant to the Alabama-West Florida Conference to provide emergency needs in evacuee support, relief supplies and materials distribution. To support long-term recovery, UMCOR awarded two substantial grants to help fund repair and reconstruction of damaged households as well as case management. The Mississippi Conference received a recovery grant for assistance in getting homes dry to eliminate extended damage.
Hurricane Laura (2020)
UMCOR awarded grants to the Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi conferences to meet immediate needs for the devastation brought on by the August 27 Category 4 storm. The strongest to ever hit the Louisiana coast, UMCOR-trained early response teams deployed in the affected areas and cleaning kits, supplies and PPE for volunteers were distributed. UMCOR is funding and supporting case management for long-term recovery.
Wildfires in the West (2020)
UMCOR awarded grants to the Pacific-Northwest, California-Nevada and Oregon-Idaho Conferences to support local response efforts to massive and prolonged wildfire spread in the summer and fall of 2020. UMCOR hygiene, cleaning and school kits were distributed to affected communities and a long-term recovery grant was awarded to the Pacific-Northwest Conference that includes case management training.
Midwest U.S. Derecho (2020)
UMCOR awarded a grant to the Iowa Conference to support relief efforts for the widespread damage caused by the August 10-11 mighty high-wind storm or “derecho.” Early response teams deployed to hard-hit areas.
Hurricane Isaias (2020)
Through the Caribbean and all along the eastern coast of the United States, heavywind, rain, flooding and tornadoes brought damage in late July-early August.
Puerto Rico was hit hard while still engaged in recovery from Hurricanes Irma and Maria as well as the December 2019/January 2020 hurricane swarm. UMCOR awarded a grant to support the response efforts of the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico (MCPR).
Early response teams were deployed in many states and UMCOR awarded a grant to the North Carolina Conference to support their response to coastal damage and tornado recovery.
Hurricane Hanna (2020)
Hitting the Texas coast on July 25, Hanna was the first storm of the 2020 hurricane season. UMCOR awarded a grant to undergird the relief efforts of the Rio Texas Conference. The conference deployed early response teams and received cleaning kits. An additional grant was awarded for assisting the recovery of flood-affected households.
Flooding in Michigan (2020)
UMCOR awarded a grant to the Michigan Conference in response to the flooding brought on by heavy rains and dam failures in central Michigan in late May. The grant provided material support for early response teams as they stabilized, secured and cleaned out the homes of many survivors as well as PPE for responding United Methodist churches. A recovery grant enabled UMCOR-trained case managers to work alongside clients as they navigate recovery.
Southeastern U.S. storms and tornadoes (2020)
In response to the deadly storms that swept across many southern states in the spring, UMCOR awarded grants the Tennessee Conference, Mississippi Conference, North Alabama Conference, South Carolina Conference and North Georgia Conference to support initial relief efforts. A recovery grant was awarded to the Tennessee Conference for the March 2 tornadoes and hailstorm, supporting the training of a team of more than 20 case managers.
Flood recovery in Oregon (2020)
In February 2020, the Umatilla River in Northeast Oregon rose and flooded many communities along its banks. UMCOR awarded a recovery grant to the Oregon-Idaho Conference to aid survivors in the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation and in Umatilla County. The funds will help begin the rebuilding process and provide salary support for Disaster Case Managers.
Hurricane Dorian (2019)
Solidarity grants were awarded to the Florida and North Carolina Conferences to assist with initial response efforts.
Wildfires in California (2017-18)
UMCOR supported the California-Pacific and California-Nevada Conferences as they responded to the needs of those affected by the devastating wildfires of 2017 and 2018. Grants were awarded totaling over $1.5 million for response and recovery ministries.
Hurricane Michael (2018)
UMCOR solidarity grants were awarded to support initial response efforts in the Alabama-West Florida and Florida Conferences. Additionally, recovery grants were approved in the amounts of $118,271 for the Florida Conference and $617,368 for the Alabama-West Florida Conference to support vital survivor services, including disaster case management, reconstruction and volunteer coordination.
Hurricane Florence (2018)
UMCOR awarded grants to the North Carolina and South Carolina Conferences to support response efforts. Recovery grants were approved in the amounts of $825,050 for South Carolina and $1,428,000 for North Carolina to support vital survivor services, including disaster case management, reconstruction and volunteer coordination. In both conferences, recovery programs were launched in January 2019. UMCOR supported with training and consultation.
Tropical Storm Fred (2017)
UMCOR awarded partners in Texas and Louisiana grants totaling over $13.8 million to aid in the recovery of more than 12,000 survivors.
Hurricane Maria (2017)
UMCOR worked closely with the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico to develop of a comprehensive plan for recovery. This included support for disaster case management, direct assistance, volunteer coordination, materials and supplies, and contracted construction services in 25 municipalities throughout the island. UMCOR awarded grants and relief supplies totaling over $20 million.
Hurricane Harvey (2017)
UMCOR awarded partners in Texas and Louisiana grants totaling over $13.8 million to aid in the recovery of more than 12,000 survivors.
Hurricane Irma (2017)
UMCOR awarded $9.1 million to the Florida Conference to support its comprehensive recovery program, aiding the recovery of more than 10,000 survivors.